football in Buin store

It’s not the technical expertise, the pace, the passing, the individual brilliance, the brutal tackles or the long standing grudge match derby’s… for the Bougainvillean game doesn’t really possess any of that rubbish.

What it does have is those glorious moments when the crowd erupts in laughter as someone falls down, botches a goal or makes an arse of themselves… and often half the players on the park are laughing along with them… and more than likely the subject of the laughter is also giggling away.

I was lucky on the recent trip to play a training game with my old crew in Buka. It was a real gift to see them again and knock a ball around in the fading dusk light. Twisted my guts coz the memories came back. Saw them off for a match at Sohano not long before I flew out… coulda easily dropped my bags and ‘missed’ the flight for a game…

I also got a run in Torokina with a bunch of friends… let’s just say that the old-fat-white-fella in bare feet wasn’t keeping up with the locals… I was skiing around and flopping down onto the damp grass more than making any meaningful contribution.

It is The Beautiful Game for any number of reasons… 2014 has served up some glorious moments already (Toby is probably still grinning like an idiot and wearing his German tie to work)… and my contribution this year has been purely for the laughs…

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